Liverpool are only missing three key first team players ahead of the Europa League clash with Udinese. Steven Gerrard has failed to recover from illness with Daniel Agger and Lucas being rested. Luis Suarez is set to lead the attack before a Premier League suspension this weekend.
Liverpool defender Jose Enrique is set to remain in the midfield for the Europa League match away at Udinese. The Spaniard normally plays at left back but he has adapted into the new rule and has said it’s a privilege to play for Liverpool in any position for a tense European fixture.
Stewart Downing will have another chance to prove his value to Liverpool ahead of the January transfer window. Downing is expected to start against Udinese this evening amid growing speculation that he will be offloaded in a permanent or loan deal in the New Year.
Liverpool boss Brendan Rodgers says he is focused on the club’s progression to the next stage of the Europa League. Liverpool travel to Italy to play Udinese and a defeat would see them drop out of the competition which would be disappointing for the younger side which has been selected for matches so far.
Brendan Rodgers has insisted that both Pepe Reina and Brad Jones remain valued and respected by the club. Speculation in the last week has linked Liverpool with a number of goalkeepers as possible long term replacements for the current first choice shot stoppers.
Liverpool are thought to be in a head-to-head battle with local rivals Everton to sign Birmingham city goalkeeper Jack Butland. Butland is one of the best young ‘keepers in the country with both clubs reportedly looking to add to their squad in the shot stopping department.
Liverpool have been linked with a £12 million January move for star CSKA Moscow player Keisuke Honda. The Daily Star has suggested that the player would be a perfect fit for Liverpool’s current attacking system and suggests contact has been made over a possible transfer.
Liverpool are monitoring the progress of 19-year-old Wolves striker Liam McAlinden. The forward has been a key figure for his club in the Under-21 Premier League and he has been in superb form with a tally of seven goals in 11 games which has caught Liverpool’s attention.
image: © Vincent Teeuwen